Thursday, March 30, 2006

It'll Take a Year to Prove I'm Right

I hesitate to write about this. After all, it is My Shameful Secret. But Lisa Moore from the Funky Winkerbean comic is going to die. I don't have any concrete evidence to back up that statement. However if today's strip doesn't clue you in that she's on her way out then I don't know what would.

You might as well put her in a red uniform and beam her down with the landing party.

Your Guide to Achieving Marital Bliss - Pt. 1

Deb got her haircut. It’s really short. I like it. She looks cute. But I’m never sure how much of a fuss to make about a change like this. After ten years (almost) of marriage I should know precisely how to respond. But I don’t. I do think about how best I can make sure Deb feels good about her new style and how I can avoid being eviscerated by a single sideways glance. I’ve seen the impact a bad haircut can have on our lives. In fact, Deb once had a guy fired from a salon because he botched her bangs. This is why I invest some time and consideration into how I react to the results of her hair appointments. In fact, I could get downright clinical about the entire situation:

Please consider there has been no standard methodology applied in the development of this table and therefore it should not be used in actual marital discourse. That aside, the table indicates that being mildly complimentary will result in disappointment for Deb. On the other hand it does seem to be the best course of action for me especially when I’m unsure about Deb’s attitude toward her haircut.

Avoiding disappointment is always a priority so employing the slightly more risky option of being reasonably complimentary seems to be the way to go. One should note there is a fine line between being reasonably complimentary and overly complimentary.

That will be the focus of next week’s analysis.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Loved him on Barney Miller

I’ve given up (I’m trying to give up) non-work related Web surfing at the office. This is difficult because it’s part of my job to explore the Web and therefore gray areas sometimes develop when distinguishing between work and personal interests.

What a load of crap.

There is no doubt that surfing for photos of a mid 70’s Six Million Dollar Man action figure provides absolutely no benefit to my employer. The only gray area is the one that will develop when H.R. decides between firing me or asking me to quit (I’d say resign, but my job doesn’t seem highfalutin enough).

I’m really not that bad when it comes to wasting time on the Web at work. It’s just that I’m tired of dealing with the guilt. During the day I’ll be doing something of a quasi-productive nature and suddenly I’ll wonder if Abe Vigoda is actually dead. The two minutes it takes me to Google old Abe isn’t all that consequential. However there is a constant stream of these types of questions flowing through my head. An entire day of chasing after even a portion of the answers adds up. It leaves me feeling like I ate a grape from the produce section at the grocery store. Some will claim it’s a common practice in order to gauge the ripeness of the fruit before purchase. But we all know it’s stealing.

So today rather then use company resources I began to write down all the things I wanted to search for on the Internet. I’m looking at the little notepad right now and the list includes: Chemistry sets. Bike tune-up tips. Grandma’s CDs. Check on a URL I want. The movie, Kung Pao. Tampasis Computers. Engadget. Helmet tethers for motorcycles. T. Rowe Price. Yes, it took time to write this crap down but not as much time as it would have taken to actually surf these topics.

So after I’m done with this post you’ll know that at some point this evening I’ll be looking for some grandmacentric grooves I can hook up Gertrude with. And I’ll being doing it without worrying about The Man spying on me or breathing down my neck. That’s right. I’m using the corporate assets and resources The Man provides FOR WORK ONLY, baby. Anyone says otherwise can kiss my gainfully employed, feeding my family, buying myself pointless electronic gadgets whenever I want ass.

By the way, Abe is alive.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Wireless G Desktop Network PCI Card for Mac G4 Tower (Sawtooth) Running OS 10.3.9

Don't bother trying to find one.

You will waste an entire weekend looking for a solution that works. You will learn about chip sets and obscure engineering revisions that shouldn't be clouding your brain. You will buy a card, try a card, return a card, buy another card, try another card, return another card. You will get desperate and download lots of third party software. Then you will try to get them off your hard drive to see if native drivers work. You will read countless postings to forums describing success using the same card you just bought but can't get to work with your Mac.

You will spend more than two hundred dollars.

Finally, you'll go to Best Buy and purchase a Buffalo High Power Turbo G Wireless Ethernet Converter (model #WLI-TX4-G54HP). You will plug the unit into your computer's Ethernet port, turn on the computer, see that you have a connection then start writing about what a horrible, fucking nightmare it is to try to get wireless connectivity for your G4 tower.

It was so easy I thought I would puke.

It was too easy. I've grown accustomed to the pain so I'm going to try to update my OS now.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

One More Reason My Wife Hates Me

Here's the first post from the couch in the living room.

I got the old G3 out of the basement and started tinkering around with it this morning. After about seven hours I finally got the old beige box to digest OS 10.2.6 (I'm being specific because I relied on a number of posts from people trying to accomplish the same thing I was -- maybe I can help someone with an old mac). That's when I got the idea to throw a wireless card into it. After two more hours, I also got that to work.

So now I have a very slow machine that's not really good for anything but surfing the Web or posting to the blog.


I tried to think of a way that I could do it without spending any money. My original idea was to convert the G3 into a DVR. People have done it, it's just a little more involved than I thought. So I compromised by settling for just getting the thing to work on the TV.

$200 later, I'm sitting on the couch with a wireless keyboard and mouse listening to Deb gripe about the money I spent.

I don't care. This shit is cool.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006


Get that shark out of your sister's butt.

I say things like this all the time now. These bizarre word combinations spill out of my mouth and sound remarkably similar to the tone I'd use to make a dentist's appointment. It's not that I'm blasé about Julia trying to assault her sister during bath time; I'm just used to it.

This isn't what I had planned to type about this evening. Truth is, I've forgotten what it was I thought I wanted to tell you about. That's probably a good thing because I'd just wind up describing something that smells, looks or tastes bad on my body.

Tonight I'll give that note a rest and try to find a different tune.

People I'd Like to Box:

My mother. There are a lot of things about my childhood I'm really pissed about so I know going a few rounds with ma would be very therapeutic. Nothing to the face, just a few body blows to knock the wind out of her.

Mike Tyson. Iron Mike would beat me so hard that I would become the guy who wears a floral print muumuu and stands outside of Miller Park yelling "EAT ME" at everyone who passes by. That aside, years ago my friend Ray and I split the cost of one of Mike's pay-per-view bouts and it lasted 54 seconds. I think we both deserve a few rounds for that.

Mrs. Grady. Because I'm convinced that if Allie's Kindergarten teacher and I were dangling from a cliff Allie would throw a rope to Mrs. Grady. I think once Allie saw me easily duck Mrs. Grady's left hook a few times she might love me more.

My mother. Did I already mention her? Sorry.

A guy in a big yellow chicken suit.
I don't really have an explanation but I bet the video would be awesome!

Myself at 19. I really deserved a punch to the gut back then (or at least a kick in the ass). These days I just deserve the beating I'd get from all the people I'm listing here.

Frank Lloyd Wright. Of course I appreciate his genius but if you read anything about him the guy was a real dick much of the time. Plus I really hate the carpeting in the Monona Terrace. I know it was only "inspired" by Wright's designs but it's enough to make me want to take a few swings at the guy.

Julia. I know she only weighs 28 pounds and has the motor skills of a poodle in the throes of a seizure but she's wiry and sneak fart fast. I don't think I'd mind losing to her but I think the threat of getting back into the ring with me might make getting her to eat her vegetables a little easier.

I think you all realize I'm truly a lover, not a fighter.

No. That's not true. I'm not a lover either.

I just want some pie.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Battle Royale

Mom suggested Old Spice and Eric thought Axe might be best for my pits.

I tried them both.

Monday I slathered on the Old Spice. It was too strong smelling and that's a bad thing because I thought the scent is a little on the feminine side.

I wore the Axe today. I like the way it smells and I'm surprised that it's a little more subtle than the Old Spice. Plus, if the commercials are right, the smell of this stuff drives women wild. Unfortunately, if I want to turn on the ladies I have to bury their heads in my armpits.

I'm surprised that I like the Axe. It seems too young for me. A little like me trading in my khakis for a pair of Von Dutch jeans. I also heard they're planning to ban the use of Axe products in a Cape Cod high school. People claim that perfumes, after shave, scented shampoos and what not are causing severe asthma attacks among the students and teachers. Chief among the products they're targeting are Axe deodorants and sprays.

In an effort to make a statement in support of the oppressed armpits of all those Cape Cod high school students I'll be wearing Axe deodorant from this point forward.

The battle has ended.

La mort à l'odeur de corps! Libérez les aisselles du monde!

Anyone want to buy a stick of Old Spice deodorant? Only used once.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Blurry Breakfast with Whispering Scouts


Busy day.

While Deb spent her day helping the school district choose a new school district Superintendent (the woman does it all, I tell you) the girls and I hit the town.

We started off at the Kiwanis Pancake Breakfast. It's sort of a tradition for us. However it certainly wasn't the same without Debbie. But we did have fun.

Here's a picture of The Blarney Boys. Allie later described this duo to Deb by saying, "They hated each other." They did seem to verbally poke and jab and one another on stage, but I just thought that was their schtick. Oh well, their hatred didn't stop them from running through every Irish standard known to man. These guys looked old. Very old. At one point I thought someone should be up there with a crash cart and a bottle of oxygen. But they completed their set and even loaded up their own equipment. They loaded it slowly; very slowly.

Allie had her face painted.

After that we took Allie for a piano lesson. She doesn't normally have a lesson this time of week. It was a make-up appointment. Julia and I went to the Buy and Sell shop in the same mini-mall and looked at crap. I did find an old Barney Miller board game that I almost bought. Maybe next time.

After the lesson we went to lunch and then made it to the movie just in time. We saw Curious George. Both girls were very well behaved (unlike the little bastard who kept kicking the back of my chair throughout the film). The girls loved the movie and I have to admit I enjoyed it, too. That's one cute monkey, after all.

Julia, despite being crabby, emotional and extremely droopy eyed insisted that we go shopping after the movie. We got to the mall and they played on all the giant electrical equipment. After that we had Ice Cream of the Future. I'd never had Dippin' Dots before. It's hyper chilled pellets of ice cream that melt in your mouth. They're so cold that they are actually a little painful to eat at first. The extreme temperature didn't stop me a bit, although Julia decided to pace herself after her first bite numbed most of her face.

We went to a jewelry store so I could look at watches. At one point, Allie walked over to the sales person I was talking with and said, "You know; you really should have more than three cameras. There's a lot of stuff around here that people would want to steal." The salesperson looked at me and started laughing. I told her that Allie did security consulting on the side. The salesperson just kind of tilted her head at me and went back to laughing at Allie.

Suddenly I'm tired and need to stop typing.

I was going to go to sleep, but Allie started puking just a few moments ago.

I'm guessing it was the Kiwanis sausage. It just didn't seem right.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Festering Pits

My armpits stink. Actually it's just my right armpit that's giving me problems.

This never used to be a problem. Lately, toward the end of the day, I'll turn my head sharply to the right and catch a subtle whiff of old corn chips combined with fetid socks.

I hesitate to admit this, but quite some time ago I switched from anti-perspirant to deodorant after the whole aluminum chloride equals Alzheimer's scare. After that, I stopped using the deodorant (I didn't like the way it conflicted with the small amount of cologne I wear to smell nice for Deb and the girls). I truly maintained a good scent. Until now. . .

So this is the week, when I'm meeting hundreds of strangers, my pit decides to become an incubator for smelly bacteria.

I'll be home tomorrow. That's when I'll head to the store and get a brand new stick of deodorant.

I've been out of the game for a while so I'm soliciting you for brand suggestions. Please let me know your favorite brand and I'll give it a try. You should know I won't try anything strong enough for a man, but made for a woman. But if you suggest it, I'll give it a whirl. Hopefully I'll find something nice immediately.

I'm not just looking for hygiene suggestions. I'm sitting here trying to kill time while I charge up my iPod for tomorrow's flight. I can't wait to get home. I miss my wife. I miss my daughters. I've warned Deb that she should prepare herself for lots of sex. Another good reason to keep my armpit from smelling. Although I understand there are lots of people into that sort of thing. I'm pretty sure Deb isn't one of them.

Tomorrow brings fresh smelling armpits, hugs from my little ones and sweet, sweet lovin' from my woman. I'm a happy guy.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Who Decided Mint Jelly Should Go With Lamb?

In the past calling home from on the road meant listening to one of the girls make various acks, ooohs, bahs and tee-tees. While they grunted and cooed I would try to ask questions, "Are you being a good girl? What was for lunch? Has mommy been drinking? Do you smell smoke? Cat still alive?"

These days I have actual conversations with the girls. Last night's with Allie revolved around her upcoming visit to the doctor on Tuesday. I told her that she was going to get ten shots. . . in the eye. She didn't really buy it but it did seem to creep her out a little. Glad to know I can manage that from more than a thousand miles away.

Julia and I discussed her potty training and Deb had to listen to me complain about my feet. I was up at 3:00 a.m. and worked until 6:00 p.m. I did a lot more walking than I anticipated. Worked up a couple of potential blisters. I didn't eat all day so I ordered meat from room service. Lots of meat. My intestines were (are) packed with lamb, cow and pig. I slept like a man with his intestines packed with lamb, cow and pig.

Today it's back to work. I plan to take a cab rather than walk. But first I'm going to hang around my hotel room a little in the hopes I can get rid of some of this barnyard inside of me.